On the night of 14th December 2020 I had a dream.
In it I was leading a church service from the stage, with many in attendance. As I was about to announce the guest speaker, hundreds began to leave the service from the rear of the hall. They streamed out rapidly in droves, leaving the building virtually empty!
“What’s going on?!” I turned and asked another leader on the platform, slightly exasperated and confused.
“They want to go out now and preach the Gospel on the streets” came the reply.
In the dream my heart filled with a mix of frustration regarding our now redundant plans for the service, including our now pointless guest speaker! But I also felt genuine joy that something of an uprising of desperation to share the gospel was driving the church in multitudes out of “my service” and onto the streets to share the Gospel.
As I woke the words “The Church Has Left The Building” filled my mind, at the vivid scene of hundreds of church goers exiting the service!
As we enter 2021 I believe we will indeed find “The Church Has Left The Building” – as we will find God has used the 2020 season to reset and release us from our old ways of building-centred programmes and our propensity to place the value of “gathering” above the value of “going” in our church cultures.
Multitudes no longer content to attend a good church, listen to sermons and enjoy sing-alongs are going to rise up with a desperation for the “Real Thing” found in the Book of Acts – a longing to share the Gospel with signs following, to fight for justice, to feed the poor and visit the prisoner, to bind up the broken hearted and set free the captives. New innovative ideas from heaven for outreaches, businesses, influential forums and new church projects will flood the ranks of the Church.
For some it will almost seem like a righteous rebellion against the religious norms of the last 50 years, as it will be uprising from the congregation, not necessarily from the normal platforms of leadership. In fact, there will be places where the leadership are doing all they can to return to normal church life, post-Coronavirus, yet the people will want to rise to a faith that is more radical, more original, more like the early Church, with its adventures, its energy, its fruitfulness and its passion.
In some places the people will ignore the leaders (as the crowd ignored me on stage in the dream!), and head off with God on divine adventures, such will be the “fire shut up in their bones” to shift up a gear in God’s purposes. A revolt against religious form will drive many from the meeting place to the market-place, finding new, innovative, fresh ways to infiltrate the world with the Word, and usher in the Kingdom.
Leaders Face a Choice
Church leaders must be willing in this time to give up the frustration that all is not as it was, and even that our attempts to return to normal are continually thwarted. Instead, we must give way to the smile in our hearts of the uprising of God’s people! Successful, godly leaders will give way to new longings for a deeper prayer-life & God-encounter among us.
They would also be wise to give way to a new spirit of unity and collaboration that will almost seem so extremely selfless, it threatens the very concept of success for your “own” church, in preference for loving, serving and working with others. This will deeply challenge the egos of many leaders. Our ego’s are about to be dashed on the rocks of God’s purposes!
Finally, leaders must also give way to the drive to the harvest field that will rise up in church members. “We must do more for the poor, for justice, to speak out, to reach the lost, to heal the hurting,” will be the heart cry of many in the pews. “Less playing at church, much more Kingdom Come!”
Leader, give way to the shifting purposes of heaven. Give way to an uprising of passion for the lost. Give way to the call for collaboration. Smile at your owns plans being thwarted as an uprising from heaven steals the agenda. If you do, you will find the favour of heaven and the joy of a true shepherd will fill your heart.
May 2021 be the year the Church left the building behind, to “Go into all the world” as the Master commanded.
You can watch this prophecy being given by Jarrod HERE.
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About the book: Away from the stormy plains of a virus ravaged, fearful and panicked world, I believe the Church has been gifted a life-changing opportunity in this time to divinely Reset the Church. God is using this season to prepare us for a long prophesied new era in God. But are you ready for it? Can you clearly see what God is about to do?
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